Feeding time at zoo goes awry when reptile makes a break for freedom

See you later alligator! Feeding time at California zoo goes awry when 200lb reptile called Darth Gator makes a break for freedom

  • Bizarre footage was captured at The Reptile Zoo in Fountain Valley, California 
  • Darth Gator, an 8.5ft-long reptile weighing 200lbs, was enticed by raw meat
  • He made break for freedom but was eventually wrangled back into his enclosure

This is the moment a hungry alligator caused chaos at feeding time when he launched himself out of his zoo enclosure to take a bigger bite of breakfast.

The footage was captured at The Reptile Zoo in Fountain Valley, California, as keeper Juliette Brewer, who is the zoo owner’s daughter, tantalized the reptile’s tastebuds with slabs of raw meat.

But things did not go to plan as Darth Gator, an 8.5ft-long alligator weighing more than 200lbs, made a break for freedom after she opened the enclosure door.

Juliette promptly called her father Jay to help wrangle Darth back into the pen alongside his companion so an ordinary service could resume.


The footage was captured at The Reptile Zoo in Fountain Valley, California, as keeper Juliette tantalized the reptile’s tastebuds with slabs of raw meat 

In the clip, which was shared to TikTok on Sunday, Juliette slides open the glass window of the alligator enclosure.

Two of the reptiles let out a growl and begin clambering over one another as they vie to be the first to the feast.

Juliette giggles as she scoops up a chunk of chicken in the feeding tongs and enticingly dangles it in front of the alligators.

An enthusiastic Darth clambers up onto the glass partition and wriggles forward in a bid to get closer to the food.

Juliette seems to spot what is about to happen as she repeatedly says: ‘Don’t even think about it.’

But just seconds later Darth snaps his jaws around the tongs and, as the keeper takes a step back, he flops out of the enclosure and to the floor.

Juliette laughs once again as she slides the box of meat out of Darth’s reach.

The hungry alligator wreaked havoc at feeding time as he launched himself out of his enclosure to take a bigger bite of breakfast

Juliette promptly decides to call her father Jay for help and the duo eventually haul Darth back through the enclosure window after several failed attempts

The alligator snaps his jaws before Juliette attempts to feed the reptile still waiting at the enclosure window. 

But the beast inadvertently knocks the food away and it falls to the floor for Darth to gulp down another helping. 

Juliette promptly decides to call her father Jay for help – despite him being at home on his day off.

She pans the camera round to show Darth crawling along the floor before stating: ‘I have a situation.’

Jay agrees to come in to help wrangle the reptile and the father-daughter duo eventually haul Darth back through the enclosure window after several failed attempts. 

The Reptile Zoo uploaded the clips to TikTok alongside a caption that read: ‘Well this wasn’t expected… the questions is how does he get back in.’

It added: ‘Luckily we raised Darth from a baby and he’s very mellow for a ‘gator.’  

Fans on social media were stunned by the encounter as one wrote: ‘Why is she laughing? I’d be running.’

Another added: ‘And that is when I would quit – right there and then.’

And a third simply said: ‘This is my biggest fear.’

The Reptile Zoo, which was founded in 2009, describes itself as ‘a unique educational entertainment facility’.

It is home to more than 100 exotic species of reptiles, amphibians and arachnids from around the world. 

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